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William Ernest Henley (Уильям Эрнст Хенли)


   To Charles Baxter

Do you remember
That afternoon—that Sunday afternoon!—
When, as the kirks were ringing in,
And the grey city teemed
With Sabbath feelings and aspects,
Lewis—our Lewis then,
Now the whole world’s—and you,
Young, yet in shape most like an elder, came,
Laden with Balzacs
(Big, yellow books, quite impudently French),
The first of many times
To that transformed back-kitchen where I lay
So long, so many centuries—
Or years is it!—ago?

Dear Charles, since then
We have been friends, Lewis and you and I,
(How good it sounds, ‘Lewis and you and I!’):
Such friends, I like to think,
That in us three, Lewis and me and you,
Is something of that gallant dream
Which old Dumas—the generous, the humane,
The seven-and-seventy times to be forgiven!—
Dreamed for a blessing to the race,
The immortal Musketeers.

Our Athos rests—the wise, the kind,
The liberal and august, his fault atoned,
Rests in the crowded yard
There at the west of Princes Street. We three—
You, I, and Lewis!—still afoot,
Are still together, and our lives,
In chime so long, may keep
(God bless the thought!)
Unjangled till the end.

                                 W. E. H.

Chiswick, March 1888

William Ernest Henley's other poems:
  1. Echoes. 17. The Sands Are Alive with Sunshine
  2. Rhymes and Rhythms. 10. Midsummer Midnight Skies
  3. Rhymes and Rhythms. 12. Some Starlit Garden Grey with Dew
  4. Ballade of the Toyokuni Colour-Print
  5. Echoes. 20. The Surges Gushed and Sounded

Poems of other poets with the same name (Стихотворения других поэтов с таким же названием):

  • James Flecker (Джеймс Флеккер) Envoy ("The young men leap, and toss their golden hair")

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